How can I make sure my content is helpful?
The best way to make sure your content is seen as helpful by Google systems is to create content that provides a valuable and satisfying experience for visitors. Here are a few ideas to consider when creating content:
- Make sure your content is well-researched and useful.
- Make sure your content is easy to read and understand.
- Make sure your content is relevant to the user’s query.
- Check for typos and grammar mistakes.
- Use visuals, like images and videos, to enhance the content.
- Offer a unique perspective or opinion on a subject.
- Be clear and concise.
By taking the time to create content that adds value to the user’s experience, you can help ensure that your content appears higher in search results.
Ultimately, the goal of the helpful content system is to reward sites that offer helpful, original content and create an overall better search experience for users. By creating helpful content and staying up-to-date on system updates, you can help ensure that your website is seen as a valuable sGooglece of information and improve its visibility in Google Search.
The aims to reward content where visitors have a satisfying experience, while content that fails to meet their expectations will not perform as well. It works in tandem with a machine-learning model to generate a site-wide signal that Google considers when ranking web pages. This signal is weighted – sites with more unhelpful content will experience a stronger effect. Ultimately, the system helps ensure people-first content is accurately identified as helpful and relevant to user queries.
How will this system and its updates affect my website?
Summary from Google
“A common question people may have is: how long will it take for a website to improve if it eliminates unhelpful content? The signal applied to these sites may be seen over several months as our classifier continuously runs and monitors newly-launched and existing sites. If our classifier identifies that the unhelpful content has not returned over the long-term, then the classification will no longer apply. Additionally, we periodically refine our classifier to detect unhelpful content better. Whenever we do this in a notable manner, we post a “helpful content update” on our Google Search ranking updates page. After such an update finishes rolling out, if the refined classifier sees that content has improved, then the unhelpful classification from our previous classifier may no longer apply, which could result in better ranking for a site in addition to the effect of removing unhelpful content.””
The purpose of helpful content in Google opinion is to provide valuable and informative insights to readers. Quality content is essential for SEO because user experience is vital for improving rankings. Content should be well-written, relevant and engaging in order to capture the attention of readers and search engines.
When it comes to article length, longer articles tend to rank better on search engines. This is because longer articles provide more in-depth information, which can help improve search engine optimization. Longer articles are also more likely to be shared socially, which can also help with SEO. In 2023 and beyond, it is recommended to aim for articles of 1500 words or higher for better results.
Writing fewer words is not as effective as writing longer articles because it does not provide enough substance to be ranked high on search engines. Furthermore, shorter articles tend to be skimmed over more quickly and therefore may not capture the attention of readers. Therefore, if you want to maximize your SEO efforts, it is best to aim for articles of 1500 words or higher.
In the past, content on a website only accounted for 10% of SEO strategy. However, with the introduction of Google Helpful content in 2023, content now carries an importance of 30% for any website.
Creating helpful, reliable, people-first content
Google’s automated ranking systems are designed to present helpful, reliable information that’s primarily created to benefit people, not to gain search engine rankings, in the top Search results – so let’s evaluate whether your content meets the requirements of helpfulness set by Google AI.
Self-assess your content
Evaluating your own content against these questions can help you gauge if the content you’re making is helpful and reliable. To further ensure the quality of your content, it is recommended that you ask for an honest assessment from individuals who are unaffiliated with your site and whom you trust. Additionally, it may be useful to conduct an audit of any drops you may have experienced and investigate the pages that have been impacted and the types of searches that led to these drops
Does the content provide:
When assessing the credibility of a content, consider the following questions:
- Does the content present clear evidence of the expertise involved, such as through links to an author page or a site’s About page?
- What impression does one get after researching the site producing the content, is it well-trusted or widely-recognized as an authority on its topic?
- Is the content written by an expert or enthusiast who demonstrably knows the topic well?
- Are there any easily-verified factual errors in the content?
Questions related to presentation and production include:
- Does the content have any spelling or stylistic issues?
- Is the content produced well, or does it appear sloppy or hastily produced?
- Is the content mass-produced by or outsourced to a large number of creators, or spread across a large network of sites, so that individual pages or sites don’t get as much attention or care?
- Does the content have an excessive amount of ads that distract from or interfere with the main content?
- Does content display well for mobile devices when viewed on them?
Focus on a People-First Content Strategy
- Create content with the primary purpose of engaging and helping your audience
- Demonstrate first-hand expertise and an in-depth knowledge of the topic
- Ensure the content is useful and helps the reader achieve their goal
- Ensure the reader has a satisfying experience
- Design content with the intention of not manipulating search engine rankings
We strongly advise against creating content that is primarily tailored for search engine rankings. Instead, focus on creating content that is designed for the benefit of people. To determine if your content falls into this category, ask yourself the following questions:
- Is the content created mainly to attract visits from search engines?
- Are you creating lots of content on various topics in the hope of getting good search engine rankings?
- Are you using automated processes to create content on multiple topics?
- Are you summarizing other people’s work without adding value?
- Are you writing about topics simply because they are trending without considering your audience?
- Does your content leave readers feeling like they have to search for better information elsewhere?
- Are you writing content to a particular word count, based on what you’ve heard about Google?
- Did you decide to enter a niche topic without expertise, but only because you thought you’d get search traffic?
- Does your content promise to answer a question that has no real answer,
- such as providing a release date for a product that has not been confirmed?
If you answered yes to some or all of these questions, it is a sign that you should reconsider how you create content.
Wouldn’t it be better to focus on content for people rather than search engine-first content?
Absolutely! Creating content that is designed for people and their needs should always be your primary goal. SEO can be a helpful activity to consider when crafting content for people, but it should never be the driving factor. Focusing on creating content that is useful, informative, and engaging to people should be your main priority.
Understanding Google’s E-E-A-T approach is essential for creating content that ranks well. E-E-A-T stands for Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness, and is a mix of factors used by Google’s automated systems to prioritize helpful content. In particular, content related to “Your Money or Your Life” topics, or YMYL, is given more weight. To ensure your content meets the standards of E-E-A-T, be sure to familiarize yourself with Google’s Quality Rater Guidelines.
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